Facts & Statistics
Primary Areas with Nightlife
- Church Street
- Higher Ground
- Main Street
- University of Vermont (UVM)
Other Places to Check Out
- The Farmhouse Tap & Grill
- JP's Pub
- Manhattan's Pizza & Pub
- McKee's Pub & Grill
- Mr. Mike's Pizza
- Three Needs Taproom & Brewery
- Fiddlehead, Long Trail, Switchback, Otter Creek, Rock Art, Harpoon, Alchemist: As of November 2011, there were 21 breweries operating in Vermont that could be described as craft- or microbreweries. These are some examples.
- Grateful Dead Drink: The band may be from California, but the drink is very popular with Vermonters.
- Magic Hat: Magic Hat Brewing Company is a microbrewery located in South Burlington, Vt. They brew about four year-round beers, four seasonals, and other specialty brews. The company does a lot for the community, including the Mardi Gras Parade. Magic Hat #9 is the most common to get.
- Shelburne Vineyards Wine: The vineyard is in Shelburne, which is only about 15 minutes from Burlington.
- The Vermont Cocktail: 1 ounce Broker's gin (or any London dry-style gin)
1/2 ounce Laird's Bonded Apple Brandy
1/4 ounce Marie Brizard Apry (apricot brandy)
3/4 ounce lime juice
1/2 ounce Grade A maple syrup
3 dashes Angostura Bitters
Favorite Drinking Games
- Beer Pong/Beirut
- Flip cup
Useful Resources for Nightlife
- Burlington Free Press Calendar
- Seven Days VT
- Seven Nights Guide
- What's Good - Seven Days Book
Cheapest Place to Get a Drink
McKee's in Winooski and Mr. Mike's Pizza in Burlington are the cheapest places to get a drink (and some drunk munchies).
Usually, you don't hear about clubs throwing parties at Champlain since it is a dry campus and college-sponsored events are not allowed to have alcohol, even if they are off campus.
Club ListingsWhat's This?
A go-to spot for the Burlington late-night college scene, Rasputin's always has the same people. Weekend nights usually include two DJs (one in the front bar and one in the back bar), usually from the Burlington area and surrounding colleges. If you're looking for cheap prices, fast bar service, and loud music—check it out.
A good deal: On a Saturday night, the cover is $3 or free if you have a student ID. LIFT includes a lounge atmosphere with a huge dance floor. The music is Top 40, clubbing type with some oldies mixed in. Once a month (or more), LIFT hosts 18-and-up nights on Wednesdays.
A club owned by Nectar's Restaurant, Metronome is always packed. There is a cover charge to get in, and the most popular nights are '80s nights on Thursdays, with cheap drinks and lots of happy people.
Bar ListingsWhat's This?
Ri Ra the Irish Pub
The best part about this place is the live music. The stage is small, and the audience is super close to the bands. They also seem to have pretty interesting local bands play on a regular basis. It has friendly bartenders, a nice atmosphere, and large group tables.
Red Square is a very hip and popular bar, with dark ambiance, packed audiences, good live music, and lots of people.
Ruben James Restaurant (RJ's)
A great place for wings! Fifty-cent wings are an awesome deal along with free chips! They have the same selection of great Vermont brews as most other bars.
What Ale's You
It's your classic college bar. Dimly lit, loud, slow service—everyone is always really drunk.
152 Saint Paul St.
Vermont Pub & Brewery
With great food and awesome beer, the brewery's menu is like a newspaper, filled with fun facts about beer. This place is recommended for a casual night out for food and drinks with friends.
Church Street Tavern
Good solid place in Downtown Burlington for some pub food and beer. The price is the best selling point here, as they offer a good bar/restaurant experience for much cheaper than their neighbors. Special $2.50 Bud drafts on Fridays!
103 Church St.
Akes' is kind of a hallway of a bar, but it has some pretty solid drink specials. It's also set up for some games, pool, and darts—very cheap, especially pitchers on Thursday. They never let it get too crowded, so you can actually sit and talk to people.
134 Church St.
Das Bierhaus has a fantastic selection of German beers and great service; plus, the menu is very good, too. Perhaps a bit pricey for food, but it's worth it, all things considered. It even has a "Mug Club" for frequent customers.
Despite being around for decades, Nectar's is a hidden gem venue. Always presenting different kinds of music, it's the birthplace of Phish, and has awesome gravy fries. It's roomy with pool tables, lounge areas, and open to the street.
With drink specials and board games, Drink is a good place for casual drinking and actually talking. It may not appeal to the usual bar/wings/sports type, though, as it tries to aim toward the eclectic, but it is a nice pre/post-show (at the Flynn) stop, and you can expect good service. It's mostly a sit-down bar for girls to catch up with their girlfriends.
What to Do if You're Not 21What's This?
LIFT (18 and up)
On Wednesdays, LIFT has 18-and-up nights. Doors open at 9 p.m. sharp, and 18- to 20-year-olds must be in before 11 p.m., 21-and-up all night long. It's easiest to find out about events by checking out LIFT's Facebook page.
All shows at Higher Ground are typically all ages unless otherwise noted. This venue has great music, food, and a cool intimate atmosphere.